Tauranga iwi angry after sewage pipe they protested against leaks within a year of installation

A Tauranga iwi who protested the installation of a new sewer are angry after it leaked raw sewage near a school just a year or so after it was installed.

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Chris Stokes of Ngāti Kuku was among those who protested the Tauranga pipeline’s installation. Source: 1 NEWS

The leak was reported last night near Te Kura O Matapihi school, and Tauranga City Council has reported that it has since been fixed and the area disinfected.

The council confirmed about 500 litres of sewage had leaked out due to a faulty air valve.

A spokesperson apologised to the community and said they have been keeping people in the area informed about what has happened.

The leak took place along the $107 million Southern Pipeline that was completed earlier this year.

In 2016, Ngāti Kuku protested against the pipeline, fearing that it could leak.

Iwi spokesperson Chris Stokes said it was exactly the kind of situation they were afraid of.

"We didn't want the sewage coming through our back yard," Mr Stokes said.

"This is the whole city's stuff coming through our back yard and into the oxidisation ponds there.

"It seems like a continuing sort of contempt they have for our community - sometimes they're not listening to us - but I must say it's starting to improve.

"We said that this would happen - if there was an accident on this pipeline, it couldn't have happened for them in a worse place - it's right outside the school."

Mr Stokes said it was "pretty disappointing".

"This thing hasn't even been rolling six to twelves months and now we've got all these issues.

"We're pretty pissed off about it actually - we're not happy about being treated like this.

"It comes through our community, with all the sewage, and we've had the railway lines coming through, the power which connects on to the rest of the city.

"They're not putting them through some of the wealthy suburbs, its coming our way, and frankly we're fed up with it."

Mr Stokes acknowledged that the pipe has to go in somewhere, but he wanted to see the council "do a proper job, not a half pie job."